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What Nobel Economics Winner Richard Thaler Really Said on Demonetisation

Former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan, whose name was also doing the rounds for the Nobel Prize, recently stated that he was never in favour of demonetisation.

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Updated:October 10, 2017, 11:55 AM IST
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What Nobel Economics Winner Richard Thaler Really Said on Demonetisation
US economist Richard Thaler, of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, speaks during a news conference after winning the 2017 Nobel Economics Prize in Chicago. (Reuters)
New Delhi: Social media buzz would have it that this year's Nobel Economics prize winner Richard Thaler had backed Prime Minister Narendra Modi's demonetisation drive — but there was a damn-ing afterword which suggested otherwise.

Thaler, on his Twitter handle, described Indian government’s demonetisation move as a "policy I have long supported", but also exclaimed saying "damn" on knowing that the government had instead introduced Rs 2,000 currency notes.

Thaler, a Professor of Economics and Behavorial Science at the University of Chicago, on Monday won the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences.

Former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan is currently serving as Distinguished Service Professor of Finance, University of Chicago Booth School. Rajan, whose name was also doing the rounds for the Nobel Prize, recently stated that he was never in favour of demonetisation.

In a tweet on November 8, 2016 — along with a link to a news article about demonetisation — Thaler said, "This is a policy I have long supported. First step toward cashless and good start on reducing corruption."




Soon after responding to comments that Rs 2,000 currency notes are to be introduced, Thaler tweeted, "really? Damn".




These tweets came from the Twitter handle '@R_Thaler', which is not officially verified but was tagged by the official feed of the Nobel Prize. The one endorsing demonetisation was played by pro-BJP handles, but not the post script.

On November 8, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced demonetisation of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes as part of efforts to curb illicit fund flows and corruption.

Thaler is the Charles R Walgreen Distinguished Service Professor of Economics and Behavioral Science and Director of the Center for Decision Research, Booth School of Business, University of Chicago.

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said Thaler has incorporated psychologically realistic assumptions into analyses of economic decision-making.

"By exploring the consequences of limited rationality, social preferences, and lack of self-control, he has shown how these human traits systematically affect individual decisions as well as market outcomes," it said in a release while announcing him as the winner of the Nobel Prize.

(With PTI inputs)
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